Recently, one furniture manufacturing company who had slated 8 of their manufacturing facilities to be moved to China changed its mind and will continue producing furniture in the US. The reasons for change that were cited were the weak US Dollar and high shipping costs from China to the US. Both of these factors actually made it more cost effective to produce in the States. Decisions like this give the US a second chance to reduce operating costs and increase quality to save jobs in the US by implementing proven quality programs like Lean Six Sigma.
But will US manufacturers take this opportunity to re-enter the global scene ready to play at a higher level? Or will they choose to take the business that comes back across the ocean for now but watch it go back overseas as the situation normalizes? This is a special ‘gift’ that we are given, where we have an opportunity to win back some of the losses of prior years. I am a firm believer in the American “Can Do” spirit. I know we can do it. But will we? And how should we proceed?